Yamaha P71 vs Roland FP10 Review: A Tight-Knit Battle Where The FP10 Comes Out On Top

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After trying out both of these digital pianos, it was honestly tough to choose a winner. They both come with great features that are ideal for any beginner or novice pianist. However, after careful consideration and tons of research, I found that the Roland FP10 is the better option, but not by a lot.

The FP10 features a wide variety of modes and a textured feel on the keys which give it more playability. With the FP10, you get tons of voices and extra features that allow students and beginners to truly explore the instrument.

On the other hand, the Amazon exclusive Yamaha P71 has an incredible tone that’s hard to match in its price range and also offers a couple of cool features and effects that allow you to create beautiful sounds on the piano.

Yamaha P71 vs Roland FP10: Comparison Chart

Image
The Winner (#1)
Roland FP-10 88-key Entry Level Digital Keyboard with Bluetooth
The Runner-up (#2)
YAMAHA P71 88-Key Weighted Action Digital Piano with Sustain Pedal and Power Supply (Amazon-Exclusive)
Model
Roland FP10
Yamaha P71
Number of keys
88
88
Hammer Action
Progresssive hammer action
Fully weighted keys
MIDI Connectivity
USB & Bluetooth
None
Tone Generation
SuperNATURAL Piano Sound
AMW Stereo Sampling
Effects
Ambience & Brilliance
Reverb (4 different types)
Layering mode
Dual Mode
Split Mode
Number of voices
12
10
Recording
Lesson mode
Speakers
Two 6W Speakers
Two 6W speakers
Line out
Polyphony
96
64
Pedal included
What I Like
Price
Price not available
$479.99
The Winner (#1)
Image
Roland FP-10 88-key Entry Level Digital Keyboard with Bluetooth
Model
Roland FP10
Number of keys
88
Hammer Action
Progresssive hammer action
MIDI Connectivity
USB & Bluetooth
Tone Generation
SuperNATURAL Piano Sound
Effects
Ambience & Brilliance
Layering mode
Dual Mode
Split Mode
Number of voices
12
Recording
Lesson mode
Speakers
Two 6W Speakers
Line out
Polyphony
96
Pedal included
What I Like
Price
Price not available
More Info
The Runner-up (#2)
Image
YAMAHA P71 88-Key Weighted Action Digital Piano with Sustain Pedal and Power Supply (Amazon-Exclusive)
Model
Yamaha P71
Number of keys
88
Hammer Action
Fully weighted keys
MIDI Connectivity
None
Tone Generation
AMW Stereo Sampling
Effects
Reverb (4 different types)
Layering mode
Dual Mode
Split Mode
Number of voices
10
Recording
Lesson mode
Speakers
Two 6W speakers
Line out
Polyphony
64
Pedal included
What I Like
Price
$479.99
More Info

Last update on 2021-12-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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  3. Yamaha P71 vs P45: Why the Amazon Exclusive P71 is the Better Digital Piano

Yamaha P71 vs Roland FP10: Differences

These are two great entry-level digital pianos that are great picks for students. When comparing the two, it was really hard to find a winner as both the Yamaha P71 and Roland FP10 offered great features that rank them at the top of their price range. But after thorough comparisons, I came to the conclusion that the Roland FP10 beats out the Yamaha P71 by 4-2 when comparing their features and differences.

Feel & Playability

The winner: Roland FP10

The reason the FP10 wins in this respect is that it feels closer to an acoustic piano because of the progressive hammer action and textured keys. While the P71 offered decent weighted keys, it just didn’t stack up to those on the FP10.

Hammer Action

The Yamaha P71 is equipped with a fully-weighted, 88-key keyboard. However, this Amazon exclusive doesn’t come with the brand’s signature GHS or Graded Hammer Action system. This is a slight let down, as that means the P71 doesn’t have the same weight of an acoustic piano, especially since this piano has so many other cool features to offer.

The Roland FP10's hammer action beats out the P71 because of its progressive hammer action
The Roland FP10’s hammer action beats out the P71 because of its progressive hammer action

The hammer action on the Roland FP10 easily beats out the P71 because it offers progressive hammer action. This means that the keys on the lower end feel heavier, while the higher keys feel lighter, mimicking the feel of an acoustic piano. Additionally, it has an escapement mechanism which recreates the “clicking” feel of when you press halfway down on a grand piano.

So, in terms of hammer action alone, the FP10 easily beats out the P71.

Key Texture

The FP10 has plastic keys just like the P71. However, the difference is that the keys on the FP10 are coated with “Ivory Touch”. This coating absorbs moisture and also mimics the feel of real piano keys, and would be easier to play if you’re used to acoustic pianos.

One of the most common customer complaints with the P71 is that the keys feel like plastic, and that’s because they are. Sadly, these keys aren’t coated with anything to make it feel like an acoustic piano, which is why the FP10 wins over the P71 when comparing the feel and playability of the keys.

Tone

The winner: Tie

Tone is arguably the most important factor of a digital piano, and in the case of these instruments, it’s a tie. One of the reasons I had such a hard time choosing a winner between the two is because their tones were both great for their price range. Both models have a unique tone generation system, a rich sound library, and a host of effects that give the pianist full control over their instrument.

Tone Generation

Both of the pianos generate their tone through samples. Everytime you press a key on these pianos, it triggers a sample or recording, which is how you get the sound. With that said, both pianos use a unique twist on this tone generation method.

The tone generation of both Yamaha P71 vs Roland FP10 is great
The tone generation of both Yamaha P71 vs Roland FP10 is great

The Yamaha P71 uses AWM stereo sampling, which stands for Advanced Wave Memory. This method requires top-quality recording technology to get accurate recordings of different instruments. After recording the sound, a digital filter is applied to the soundwave, which gives it a more realistic and natural sound. 

On the other hand, the FP10 uses SuperNATURAL piano sound. This method involves sampling each of the piano’s 88-keys with top of the line equipment, with natural decay. Many other pianos use artificial decay on their samples to save on memory at the cost of sound quality, but that isn’t the case with the FP10.

At the end of the day, the tone generation of both of these pianos is great, especially for its price range. And choosing a winner between the two largely depends on personal preference and the type of sounds the user wants to hear when playing the piano. With that said, Yamaha’s stereo sampling does produce a slightly crisper tone in the ears of most customers, which makes it ideal for those used to acoustic pianos.

Sound Library

Both of these pianos have a fairly small family, with the FP10 only having 15 voices and the P71 having 10. Since the FP10 has a couple more voices than the P71, it has a bit more versatility, but not enough to make a huge difference. 

The extra sounds you get on the FP10 are jazz scat, synthpad, and vibraphone, which are all fun and unique voices that any beginner pianist would love to experiment with. With that said, these aren’t exactly common voices that you’ll use in a lot of piano music, which is why I said it doesn’t make a large difference.

Both of these pianos have a fairly small family
Both of these pianos have a fairly small family

Aside from those extra sounds on the FP10, both pianos come with a couple of grand piano, electric piano, and organ voices that you can switch between with the press of a button. While the FP10’s sound library contains more choices, the grand piano sounds from the Yamaha are arguably better, since the samples come from some of Yamaha’s most famous acoustic pianos.

Effects

When it comes to the tone, the effects are probably the only time the Yamaha P71 has an edge. This is because it comes with four types of reverb which can add a lot of realism to the piano’s tone. You can even tweak the reverb to truly reflect your preferences. However, you can’t save your presets for easy access later on, which is a slight hassle.

The FP10 doesn’t come with reverb, but it gives you the ability to adjust the ambience and brilliance of the piano. This is a great way for students to start learning about tweaking piano sounds to fit their preferences. So, while the P71 has a slight edge with its built-in reverb, you still get some tone customization options with the FP10.

Sound System

The winner: Tie

One of the cons of both of these pianos is the sound system. Since they are both designed for students and novice pianists, it doesn’t come with the best sound system. While both pianos come with speakers, they are small, 6W speakers that you can find on either side of the instruments. These speakers are great for practicing, but if you’re jamming with other musicians and performing, you’re going to need to plug into an external sound system.

However, neither of the pianos have dedicated line out ports in the back, so you can only connect to external speakers using the headphone output.

Piano Features

The winner: Roland FP10

When comparing the piano features of each instrument, the Roland FP10 was the winner because of superior polyphony, more connectivity options, and more modes in general that give the pianist more versatility.

Comparing these two pianos, the Roland FP10 has the better piano features
Comparing these two pianos, the Roland FP10 has the better piano features

Polyphony

Both the FP10 and the P71 have lackluster polyphony, to say the least. In this day and age, most pianos have maximum polyphony over 100, but the FP10 and P71 only have a maximum polyphony of 96 and 64, respectively.

While it isn’t as great as some of the more premium options out there, the FP10’s and P71’s polyphony is good enough to play wide and spread out chords with many notes clearly. However, since the FP10 has a larger polyphony, chords sound slightly clearer than the P71.

Connectivity

One of the areas where the FP10 knocked the P71 out of the park is connectivity. On the FP10, you get wireless MIDI connectivity via bluetooth and wired MIDI via USB. The BlueTooth MIDI is especially useful for beginners as it allows you to pair the device with the Roland app on your phone. From there, you can make adjustments and tweak other parameters. You can also use the Bluetooth to connect wirelessly to a computer and DAW, but customers reported that this works best for Mac users and not PC users.

If you want to use the FP10 as a MIDI controller and play sounds from different VST’s, you can also use the MIDI USB connection. That way, you can use this for practicing as well as recording and composing your own music. The P71 doesn’t have any of these connectivity options, which is why it lags behind the FP10 in this aspect.

Split Mode & Dual Mode

Neither of these models comes with split mode, where you can divide the left and right side of the piano into different sounds, they do come with dual mode. Dual mode allows you to combine the sound of two instruments at the same time. This makes for a very unique tone and allows a lot of room for experimentation, which is a great feature of beginner pianos.

While the FP10 doesn’t have a split mode, you could theoretically divide the left and right side of the piano using the app. On top of that, it comes with twin piano mode, which divides the keyboard into two tiny, 44-key pianos. This is a great feature for piano classes as it allows the student and instructor to play at the same time.

Yamaha P71 vs Roland FP10: The Similarities

These two pianos came with a fair amount of similarities, considering they are some of the best beginner options on the market today. You can’t go wrong with either of these models, as they are both 88-key fully-weighted pianos that are great for beginners and piano students.

Both of these pianos have simple 6W speakers for practicing, which are great for students. However, they won’t be loud enough if you’re playing with other musicians. Additionally, both of the pianos employ a unique spin on simple sampling for tone generation, which allows for a more accurate tone.

If you’re a piano student looking for a quality instrument for practicing, then both the Yamaha P71 and Roland FP10 are great options, though the FP10 offers a very slight edge.

Quick Rundown of the Roland FP10

Roland FP-10 88-key Entry Level Digital Keyboard with Bluetooth
  • Rich, responsive tone from Roland renowned supernatural piano sound engine
  • 88-Key hammer-action with progressively weighted piano touch for maximum expression
  • Bluetooth MIDI for wireless connection to popular apps for Education, creativity, and enjoyment on your mobile device
  • Roland free piano Partner 2 app provides remote control and added functionality for the FP-10
  • Usb MIDI for one-cable connection to computers or mobile devices

Last update on 2021-12-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros
  • Bluetooth and MIDI connectivity
  • Progressive hammer action
  • Textured keys
  • Equipped with dual mode and twin piano mode
  • Compact and portable
Cons
  • Speakers could be better
  • No dedicated line out for external speakers

Quick Rundown of the Yamaha P71

YAMAHA P71 88-Key Weighted Action Digital Piano with Sustain Pedal and Power Supply (Amazon-Exclusive)
  • Amazon exclusive model includes power adapter and sustain pedal
  • 88 fully weighted piano style keys simulate the feel of an acoustic piano and provide a quality playing experience
  • Contains 10 different voices, including digitally sampled tones from real Yamaha acoustic grand pianos
  • Dual mode lets you combine 2 voices together, like piano and strings, for an inspiring new playing experience
  • Slim and stylish design with a depth of less than 12 inches, the P71 requires little space and weighs only 25 pounds

Last update on 2021-12-07 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros
  • Great piano tones
  • Fully-weighted keyboard
  • Built-in reverb effects
  • Comes with dual mode
  • Expression pedal and music rest included
Cons
  • No Bluetooth or MIDI connection options
  • Only has 64 note maximum polyphony

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